Vegan Overnight Oats are easily the best make-ahead breakfast for a busy life. Mixing simple ingredients such as rolled oats, dairy-free milk, chia seeds, and your favorite toppings is all you need to get these grab-and-go breakfasts ready for your week. Here's a roundup of 15+ of my FAVORITE vegan overnight oats recipes to keep you inspired all year round.
As we all know, clean eating starts with a healthy breakfast. Overnight oats are one of my favorite ways to eat a healthy vegan breakfast because all the work is done ahead of time! When I wake up, all I have to do is open the fridge and breakfast is ready.
Why they're amazing
You can make multiple servings of any of these effortless overnight oats recipes at once, which helps you save time and keeps breakfast easy. Each recipe takes no more than 10 minutes to whip up, so you can also make lots of flavors on your prep day to keep things interesting throughout the week.
Oh, and did I mention they freeze well, too? Meal Prep FTW!
Both kids and adults will love this easy breakfast because it can be mixed up with any added ingredients that you can imagine! The flavor combinations are endless and can be changed up every time.
Whether you're in the mood for dessert-y flavors like chocolate peanut butter, black forest cake, or cheesecake, or you want something light and fresh like peaches and cream or lemon blueberry, there's sure to be something here for everyone.
Still not convinced? You’re going to love these vegan overnight oats recipes because:
- You can eat them cold or warm — dealer's choice!
- They are a great way to get important nutrients first thing in the morning.
- They’re super portable, meaning you can bring them to work, the gym, or to a play date.
- You can eat them as a healthy snack or for a light meal.
- There's exactly ZERO cooking required!
Now, let's get to it, shall we??
What Are Overnight Oats?
Overnight oats are rolled oats that have been mixed with flavors and liquid, then left in a sealed jar to soak overnight. The liquid saturates the grain, making it easy to digest without any cooking. Toppings and flavors are added to completely customize them to your tastes.
To make overnight oats vegan, soak them in non-dairy milk and/or yogurt and include plenty of fruit, nuts, and other plant-based flavors for a well-balanced breakfast.
Ingredients and Substitutions
Healthy and nutritious oats are flexible and can suit anyone’s taste buds. You can make them with all of these easy ingredients and then add your favorite toppings. These are the primary ingredients you'll need for the following recipes:
- Gluten-Free Rolled Oats: Rolled oats are the best for making overnight oats. Make sure they are not steel-cut or quick-cook oats. While oats are naturally GF, make sure to choose certified GF if you have a gluten sensitivity.
- Unsweetened Non-Dairy Milk: You can use a variety of different milks to soak the oats, including almond, coconut, rice, soy, or hemp milk.
- Chia Seeds: These add bulk and fiber to the breakfast, as well as soak up the liquid and flavors. They also help change the texture from soupy to pudding-like. Feel free to use hemp or ground flax seeds if you don’t have chia.
- Maple Syrup (optional): This natural sweetener will add a touch of sweetness to your oats. If you don’t have any, use agave, coconut sugar, or a few drops stevia instead.
- Nut Butter (optional): This will add healthy fat and a great texture. You can use almond butter, cashew butter, peanut butter, or your favorite natural nut or seed butter. Try to avoid using any nut butter that contains sugar or salt, as it could mess with the flavor.
- Vegan Yogurt (optional): This will add some creaminess to your oats.
How To Make
Overnight oats come together in only a few minutes and then can be left in the fridge until you’re ready to eat. Here’s how to make this recipe:
1. Add everything together: Add the oats, milk, chia, nut butter, and maple syrup together and pour into your mason jars/container with lid.
2. Mix Well & Refrigerate: Stir until all the ingredients are combined and well mixed. Seal the jars with a lid and refrigerator for at least 6 hours or overnight.
3. Add Toppings & Serve: Top your overnight oats with all of your toppings the next morning and enjoy!
Optional Topping and Flavor Ideas
Customize your oats with these easy add-ins:
- Fresh or Frozen Fruit
- Jams & Preserves (e.g. Strawberry chia jam or Blueberry chia jam)
- Plant-Based Protein Powder
- Seeds (chia, flax, pumpkin, sunflower, or hemp )
- Nuts (Sliced almonds, walnuts, cashews, or pecans)
- Dried Fruit (shredded coconut, raisins, craisins)
- Dairy-Free Yogurt
- Spices (Cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice)
- Puréed Fruits & Veggies (canned pumpkin, applesauce, mashed sweet potatoes)
Helpful Recipe Tips
- If you prefer warm oats, heat them in the microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring as needed, or transfer them from the jar to a saucepan and heat over medium heat until warmed through. Add more milk as needed.
- To evenly soak the oats, make sure they’re fully submerged in the milk as they sit in the jar.
- Prep and store your toppings beforehand so you can easily add them to your oats when you grab them from the fridge. If using fresh fruit, cut it the morning you’re eating the oats so they don’t get soaked in the milk and end up with a mushy texture.
- Mason jars with lids are the best container for overnight oats because they tightly pack the milk and oats together and help infuse all of the flavors but any lidded container will do.
- To make them in bulk for weekly meal prep, add all of the dry and non-perishable ingredients together and store them in your pantry or on your countertop. Before bed, add the milk and stir thoroughly.
To store, make the oats and seal them in a mason jar or container. They can last up to 5 days in the fridge, although they have the best taste and texture for the first 2 to 3 days. You can also store them in the freezer (without any fresh fruit toppings) for up to 3 months.
This is a healthy breakfast option because oats will give you sustained energy throughout the day. You can also add various healthy toppings that add fiber and nutrients like chia seeds and fruit.
Instant oats are not the best for overnight oats because they are already partially cooked. The milk will soak through them mush faster and ruin the texture.
Yes! Soaking your oats overnight breaks down the structure of their fibers, making the nutrients easier to access for the body.
Overnight oats are soaked in milk for a long period of time (overnight) while regular oats are cooked with liquid and heat.
The best type of oats are rolled oats because they are strong enough to hold their texture as they soak in milk but also soft enough to create the best texture once they finish soaking.
Any kind of fruit tastes great in overnight oats, but most should be used as a topping instead of being mixed in. For instance, you can mix in bananas with the oats overnight to elevate the texture, but a fruit like strawberries or fresh berries should be placed on top before consuming as they will not get soggy in the milk.
Fruit-Flavored Overnight Oats Recipes
Chocolatey Overnight Oats Recipes
Coffee Shop Inspired Overnight Oats Recipes
Mary Ellen Valverde MS, CNS, LDN is a Licensed Nutritionist and Certified Nutrition Specialist who empowers vegans to feel clear and confident about what is uniquely nourishing to them. Mary Ellen's recipes and nutrition information have been featured on Yahoo News, Parade, VegNews, LIVESTRONG, Dr. Axe, Greatist, LIVEKINDLY, Brit+Co, Well+Good, and more.
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